Smoke filled the room as several rubber bats dropped from the ceiling. A spooky song played quietly in the background as a door at the back of the set swung open.
“My lovelies! My lovelies!” Cackled a woman as she walked out of the door and towards the camera.
She looked like she had been ripped out of an old horror movie, her revealing gothic dress left little to the imagination and her hair was sculpted into an inky black beehive that only served to make her pale skin look even paler.
“Happy Halloween!” Cheered the woman, her accent slipping a bit as she raised her voice. “It is the best night of the year. The night when ghosts and ghouls roam the streets. And if I get lucky, my bedroom!”
Suddenly a rubber rat slid across one of the tables that littered the set. The harsh stage lights made it obvious that this rat was being pulled along by a small piece of string.
The sound of a rat squeaking started to echo out of the speakers. Morbida quickly spun around and theatrically glared at the rubber toy.
“Rattus! I’m getting there, calm yourself!” She shouted as she waved her hand dismissively. “As my plague-ridden friend was trying to say, I’m Morbida and welcome to my Cinema Crematorium! Where darkness and depravity lurk around every corner! And I lurk front and center!”
Morbida posed for the camera as several pre-recorded screams played over the speakers. The screams were dramatically low quality, suggesting that they were ripped from a very old film.
“Let’s go see what the crematorium has for us today! But first I need my shovel,” explained Morbida as a shovel was thrown in from off-camera. Mobrida went to catch it but missed it by a mile.
The shovel clattered as it hit the ground. Morbida quickly turned and shrugged at the camera. “Can’t get the staff these days,” she chuckled as she quickly grabbed the prop.
Once she had the shovel in hand she walked to the side of the set, the camera tracking her every movement. The side of the set looked like a crypt, complete with fake cobwebs and random patches of dirt.
“Now, what do we have today,” mumbled Morbida as she started to dig in the dirt. After a few seconds of vague shovel movement, Morbida bent down and grabbed an old, dented film can.
Morbida blew on the can, sending a massive cloud of dust into the air. She then pulled the canister open and looked at the roll of film for a few seconds.
“My dinner with Frankenstein,” she said as she threw the canister over her shoulder. “Seen it, was too slow.” As the canister hit the floor Morbida bent down and started to dig again.
After a few seconds, Mobrida put the shovel down and grabbed a load more film canisters. “Waiting for Dracula, not a fan of the ending. Wolfman’s choice, certainly not my choice. Plan twelve from Sutton-On-Sea, the less said about that the better.” Giggled Morbida as she quickly threw the cans over her shoulder.
Once her hands were empty Morbida let out a sigh. “What a shame. It is as dead as a graveyard in here.” She said before turning to the camera. “I guess I should have expected that!”
Suddenly one of the doors at the back of the crematorium swung open, revealing a plastic skeleton with a film canister resting atop it. Morbida let out a soft gasp as she ran up to the door.
“Lord Bone! What do you have for me?” She shouted as she pulled the canister off of the skeleton. However, as she pulled the canister, the skeleton’s arm broke off and flew towards the camera.
A soft thud could be heard as the fake arm hit the cameraman in the head. Morbida smirked for a moment before jumping back into character.
“I guess he wanted to give me the bone!” Quipped Morbida as she closed the door and lifted the canister up so she could read the label. “Non potuisti? Never heard of it!” She said as she walked back to the center. “But hey, Halloween is a time for new experiences, at least that is what I always say the morning after, so let’s do it!”
Morbida quickly shoved the canister into a very damaged projector and started to randomly flip switches as various sound effects played over the speakers.
After a few seconds, a blast of smoke came out of the projector as Morbida clapped her hands. “Wonderful! Wonderful! So grab the popcorn and your favorite ghouls as we start our Halloween macabre movie marathon!” Cheered Morbida as she sat down on a chair and grabbed a popcorn bucket that was full of rubber spiders.
The lights in the studio dimmed as the monitors turned on, revealing the opening titles of a film. “And, we’re off,” shouted the cameraman as Morbida stretched.
“Any idea what this film is?” Asked Morbida.
“No idea,” replied the cameraman as he looked at the monitor. “Apparently the intern found it at the back of the film vault. It has not been shown for years, we had to dig the old equipment out to broadcast it.”
“I thought we were going to get something big for Halloween,” mumbled Morbida. “Let me guess, saved for a prime time slot where it is edited to hell?”
“Bang on,” chuckled the cameraman. “We know horror is best when you’re only allowed to say heck.”
“Yeah, I was hoping for something better for my live episode,” moaned Morbida as she watched the monitors. The film was still on the opening credits but it was already clear that this film had been made on a shoestring budget.
Morbida stretched as the credits continued to run. She had nothing to do until the break so she thought that she might as well watch the film just in case she could think of any new jokes.
As the credits faded the screen started to flicker. Symbols flashed up for a few seconds as the whole shot started to wobble. It almost looked like the projector was having issues.
Morbida quickly sat up, preparing to cover for the technical difficulties. However, the movie continued to play, suggesting that this strangeness was part of the director’s vision.
The whole screen turned a deep red as the symbols continued to flash and quiver. Morbida let out a groan as her head throbbed. “What the hell is this?”
“I have no idea,” replied the cameraman. “This is crap.”
“I need to quip about this,” nodded Morbida as the flickers turned into bright flashes.
“Maybe this is like that film with the video that kills you?” Questioned the cameraman.
Morbida went to speak, but before she could get a word out she saw something in the flashes. She leaned forward and tried to make out what it was. However, it was only appearing for a fraction of a second every few flashes and the bright red frame made it hard to make out the lines.
“What sort of arthouse nonsense is this?” Asked the cameraman as Morbida continued to stare into the screen. Something about it made her feel uneasy but she couldn’t put her finger on it.
The flashes grew brighter and more intense as the distortion and wobbling grew worse. Morbida was sort of impressed, she had never seen distortion like this on film. This looked more like a digital effect than a clever analog trick.
She continued to stare, desperate to work out what was hiding in the flashes and distortion. She didn’t know why, but part of her was desperate to work out what it was. Morbida felt a deep need to understand this weird film and to work out just what it was trying to convey.
Morbida swore she could make out what seemed to be a human face. At first, she presumed that it was merely pareidolia at work. But the more she looked, the more convinced she was that something was hiding in the distortion.
Morbida continued to lean forward in an attempt to get a better look at the monitor. She was so focused on the film that she didn’t realize her cameraman was also staring at the monitor, his expression totally blank.
The longer Morbida stared, the weirder she felt. Something about this film made her uneasy. At first, she presumed her unease was caused by this film’s odd nature but the longer she thought about it, the more she struggled to place where her nerves were coming from.
The film continued to flicker and dance, the red growing more vibrant with every passing second. Morbida’s eyes started to water as the brightness of the screen burnt her retinas. But she couldn’t look away. No matter how much it hurt, she had to know what was hiding behind the distortion.
Morbida’s eyes traced over the frame, almost like they were being drawn by some unknown force. The brightness of the red made it much easier to see the lines hiding in the fuzziness.
They very clearly made up a face. A female face. But it wasn’t an image, it was actual footage. Both Morbida and the cameraman were able to make out the woman as she swayed in the frame, a smile growing on her face.
The woman was fascinating. Her movements were odd and very unnatural and the changing pace of her swaying made it look as if she was dancing to a tune only she could hear.
Morbida and the camera guy continued to stare at the monitor. Both of them were so fascinated by the figure that they didn’t question how long this strange segment had been running for.
The woman on the screen continued to sway, her smile growing bigger and bigger. Morbida could have sworn the woman was moving closer to the screen, it was almost like it was trying to emulate a 3D movie without the glasses.
Morbida’s head throbbed again as the woman opened her mouth, revealing line after line of razor-sharp teeth as well as an overly long tongue that seemed to twist and writhe within her strangely cavernous mouth.
Whispers started to fill the room, even though the monitors had no speakers. It was like someone was stood right next to Morbida and whispering into her ear.
“I,” mumbled Morbida as she continued to stare at the woman, her whole body totally frozen. She could feel a strange sensation building up inside her, permeating every cell of her body.
“Destroy them,” whispered the voice. “You are stronger than them. You are superior. Destroy them.” Morbida squirmed, she wanted to move her head away from the voice, but she couldn’t look away from the monitors.
The woman looked like she was seconds away from bursting out of the screen. Her gaze had become predatory. It was like she was sizing up a target. Her eyes were black circles that showed no empathy or humanity. They were just voids that sat upon her face.
“You are powerful. We are powerful,” whispered the voice as Morbida gazed into the black pools. Her veins felt like they were full of sharp shards of ice that were shredding her insides as they flowed through her body.
Morbida wanted to move, but she was totally frozen. Her eyes grew wider as she continued to stare deeper and deeper into the dark pits that seemed to go on forever.
Little trickles of blood ran down the woman’s face as the whispering grew louder. “You are us, you are us. We are strong, we are powerful.”
The ice continued to flow through Morbida’s veins as her head started to pound. It was like someone was hitting it with a hammer over and over and over.
She wanted to move. She wanted to get up and flee. To run for her life. But she just couldn’t it. It didn’t matter that it hurt, it didn’t matter that she was terrified, she couldn’t do anything.
“We are one.” Droned the voice as Morbida’s brain throbbed again. Her body felt cold and light. She felt like she was floating inside a blizzard. “We are togetherness. We are together,” continued the voice as Morbida’s body shuddered.
Morbida’s eyes opened wider, it felt like someone was physically pulling her eyelids open and stopping her from blinking. She could only watch as the figure in the monitor smiled an evil smile, totally unphased by the torrent of blood running down her face.
“Join us,” groaned the voice. “Be with us. Be one. Be one. Be one. Be one. Be one.” It continued as Morbida’s brain continued to ache.
The red flashes were now bathing the room in a blood-red light, almost as if the movie was leaking into the real world. A shudder ran down Morbida’s spine as the face moved closer and closer to the camera, almost like it was going to press its face against the screen.
“Hunt pray. Devour prey.” Growled the voice. Suddenly the woman on the screen extended her arm and, rather than simply going out of shot, the arm pushed out of the glass and into the room.
Morbida felt pain flash through her body as her heart started to pound in her chest. She wanted to look away but she couldn’t. Her eyes were always drawn back to the black voids.
Slowly the woman crawled out of the screen and into the studio, the predatory grin on her face only growing more perverse as time passed. Morbida wanted to scream until her throat was raw but she couldn’t seem to make herself do it. She was utterly mesmerized by this creature’s eyes and unable to control her body.
“Join us. Be us.” Hissed the voice as the woman slowly started to crawl towards Morbida. The red glow made the creature look even more horrific. It was like some dark mockery of the human form. While it had all of the correct limbs none of them were the right size and many of them had joints where there shouldn’t have been joints.
Morbida could only stare into the creature’s eyes, helplessly watching as it moved towards her. Her whole body was wracked with pain, it was like every cell in her body was trying to rip itself apart.
“Come with me,” whispered the voice. “Join with me.”
Morbida felt a hot liquid run down her face as she the creature stopped inches in front of her chair. After a few seconds, a metallic taste filled Morbida’s mouth as she started to shake uncontrollably.
The creature rose up on its hind legs and pushed its face into Morbida’s, its hot breath making her skin tingle and burn. The black eyes seemed to go on forever and Morbida couldn’t look away from them no matter how badly she wanted to.
“You can’t fight us. You are us,” growled the woman as she gripped Morbida’s chin. Her nails were like red-hot iron nails against Morbida’s already sore flesh. “You belong to us, are part of us.” Mocked the voice as Morbida felt the words echoing in her head.
It was like the creature was attacking her mind. The room had faded into a red haze, making it feel like the creature had dragged her out of time itself. As if they were trapped together in an eternal hellscape.
The more Morbida gazed into the creature’s eyes, the faster her sanity unraveled. But she couldn’t pull her gaze away from the eyes, the dark voids were just too powerful and too tempting. Morbida was repulsed but also overwhelmed with the urge to fall into their depths.
“Give to us,” continued the creature. Morbida couldn’t do anything. She could not think and she could not move, all she could do was gaze helplessly as her brain gave into the words of this strange and unnerving creature.
The creature raised its free arm and drove it towards Morbida’s forehead. A loud, wet, splatter could be heard as Morbida spiraled into the dark void of the creature’s eyes.
Morbida felt the world coming into focus around her. “This is our realm now our sisters!” Shouted her mouth as she tried to work out what was going on.
As her eyes adjusted to the light Morbida realized she was stood on her set, talking to the camera. However, her camera guy looked weird. His mouth was hanging open and his eyes were milky white.
Morbida tried to move but found she couldn’t. In fact, she couldn’t feel her limbs at all, it was like she was floating inside her body, disconnected from every single muscle and tendon.
“We’re going to take this place over, we’re going to rule this disgusting realm,” continued Morbida’s lips as she waved her fists at the camera. Morbida wanted to scream, but she couldn’t make a single sound.
“One of us. One with us, One of us. One with us” echoed a voice in Morbida’s mind. “You are us. You are us,” it continued as Morbida tried to feel her limbs.
“Tomorrow we will show ourselves nationally. Show everyone you know. Make sure everyone sees us!” Cackled Morbida’s lips as an icy cold ran through Morbida. She continued to helplessly float in her own body, the voice still droning in her mind.
“One with us. You are us. One with us. You are us. One with us. You are us.”